Union BJP minister Giriraj Singh, infamous for his controversial remarks, has landed in an embarrassing situation. The man who was often heard sending his party critics to Pakistan has found his own home gone missing following the seat-sharing deal among the NDA partners. His home Lok Sabha seat has been given to the LJP under the alliance formula, leaving him shocked and shattered. He is the lone minister from the seat to miss his “home.”
The firebrand minister, who currently represents Nawada seat in the Lok Sabha, had perhaps never thought even in the wildest dream that he will have to go “homeless”. After all, he was considered very close to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He was one of the very few BJP leaders who had travelled to Gujarat to meet Modi, then the chief minister of Gujarat, to express his solidarity with the latter while many within the party shirked from even describing Modi as a “PM Material”. The gifting of his home constituency that he nursed with much care has, thus, very obviously distressed the minister.
“Compulsions of seat-sharing may be there. But I wish to underscore that no other union ministers from Bihar may have to give up his sitting seat,” a fuming Singh told the media on Monday, adding “And that is despite the fact I have worked so much to nurture my constituency.” According to him, he talked to the state party chief some “200 times” yet he was treated this way. He added that the party chief had assured him to field him from the place of his choice. “But, I don’t know what happened later,” he added.
The problem had arisen after the JD-U, headed by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, staked claim over the Munger seat which is the sitting seat of the LJP. Kumar wanted to field his close confidante Lalan Singh from that seat. However, the LJP agreed to vacate this seat for the JD-U candidate only if the neighbouring Nawada seat is given to the party. It was under this arrangement that the BJP minister has lost his home.
Now, there are reports of Singh being offered Begusarai seat but he is not interested in contesting form the new seat. And the reason for his annoyance is not unfounded. As such, he wanted to contest from this seat last time but was given Nawada but now that he represents this seat, he is being told to shift to Begusarai. The main reason, though, is that he will be facing a strong rival in the form of powerful student leader Kanhaiya Kumar, former president of Jawaharlal Nehru University Students’ Union.
As such, the CPI has announced to field Kanhaiya from Bhumihar-dominated Begusarai seat, and if that happens, his fellow castemens’ votes will be sharply divided between the two leaders from the same community which means a cakewalk for the RJD candidate. The RJD has refused to allot this seat to the CPI and so far no deal has been reached between the two parties.
What has further upset Singh is that none of his cabinet colleagues from Bihar have faced such situation and all the ministers except him, such as Ashwini Kumar Choubey (Buxur), RK Singh (Ara), Ram Kripal Yadav (Patliputra) and Radha Mohan Singh (Motihari) have been retained by the BJP and it is believed they will be fielded again from their respective LS seats.